Riding the Rails: Gadgets, Apps and Strategies for Snoozing on the Train
Whether you’re traveling by Amtrak or on the iconic Orient Express, taking the world by train is an exciting way to slow down, and take in the sights and sounds of a new place more easily than when you fly. But, the drawback to traveling via iron horse is, it can be really difficult to catch a few winks. Here are some apps guaranteed to help you fall asleep, even in the midst of whistles, multiple stops, and noisy neighbors.
While train travel comes with a whole list of benefits, like skipping airport security, letting someone else do the driving and getting a completely different travel experience, you also need to consider a few things you might not worry about on the plane. Trains are pretty darn noisy, and often lit with very bright lights. Bring things like an eye mask, headphones and ear plugs to block out the sensory overload. Additionally, you’ll want to make sure you wear comfortable clothes and pack things like a cozy sweater or a blanket to stay nice and warm.
Consider Investing in a Sleeper Car
A lot of the issues that come when attempting to sleep on a moving train is the fact that you’re confined to an upright position. Sleeper cars provide beds and a little more privacy, but you can expect to pay extra and remember, this option fills up quickly. Be sure to book well in advance if you want a guaranteed bed.
If You Are Stuck Sleeping Upright, Do This
If you didn’t want to shell out for a sleeper car, or one wasn’t available, don’t fret, just try to make things as easy as possible. If it’s an option, try to sit by the window, so you can give yourself something to lean against, and lean your seat back. Bring things like a pillow and a blanket, and make sure your devices are charged (definitely bring your chargers), so as to have unlimited access to all desired media. Amtrak offers some good pointers for sleeping, even when you can’t lay down.
Download a white noise app or a collection of favorite podcasts, audiobooks, or even some movies to watch on your laptop or mobile phone. Consider setting an alarm so you won’t miss your stop. The Alarm Clock for Me app features soothing music and a sleep timer that will get your head in the right space for sleeping. Get it on Google Play.
Last, But Not Least, Be Safe
Keep things like money, valuables close to the chest. Pickpockets are a real threat, especially if you do manage to fall asleep. If you’re worried about luggage, be sure to keep your suitcase strapped in place and consider using a piece that requires a key or combination for access. Additionally, you’ll want to keep things like your train ticket, passport and more all in a safe, easy to access place, both to protect against theft and in case you’re asked to present any documentation.